Fortunately this year, Hubby and I were able to match our schedule and spend our summer break together. When asked how he wanted to spend it, he imagined himself swimming, sleeping, eating seafood and just relaxing with me. I also wanted to have a laid-back vacation so we considered visiting a coastal city. We decided to spoil ourselves a little with a week-long vacation in Vietnam.
We initially booked tickets to Danang but we changed our minds and chose Nha Trang instead as it has a better beach promenade with only one third of Danang’s population. Most Koreans travel to Danang for a beach getaway so we opted for the less crowded Nha Trang, Vietnam’s premier beach destination.
Entry Requirement: Passport valid for 6 months
*Korean and Filipino citizens are not required to get a visa for a short stay in Vietnam.
Right after work, we headed directly to Incheon International Airport to catch our flight at 1:50 AM. Since our arrival time back to Korea was at midnight (which means no subway or bus available), we decided to avail the long-term parking service at the airport.
After checking our baggage in, we went down to World Roaming booth at the arrival floor to get the pocket wifi that we reserved. The package included the pocket wifi, charger, international adapter and an extra battery pack. Renting a wifi is a lot cheaper than international roaming service.
Prior to our trip, we were both too busy with work that we weren’t able to change some cash in advance at a bank in Seoul. I got anxious because all the banks at the departure area were all closed. I just comforted myself with the thought of withdrawing cash in Vietnam using my international cash card or credit card. While shopping at Duty Free Incheon, Hubby asked a staff if there’s a bank inside the exclusive area, and yup, there is KEB Hana Bank which is open 24/7. Woot! What a relief!
It was a smooth 5-hour flight, and we just slept all the way through. We arrived safely on time at Cam Ranh International Airport at 5:00 AM (local time). Vietnam is two hours late. The airport is just small but claiming the baggage took so long – one bag came out every 5 minutes. Aigooya! We were indeed out of the ppali-ppali world!
The first thing I did right after passing the immigration clearance was activating the pocket wifi. It worked well and the connection was fast. I immediately contacted our driver who woke up as early as 4 AM to travel from Nha Trang to Cam Ranh to pick us up but ended up waiting for an hour a half more.
While Hubby was waiting for our baggage, I headed to the Currency Exchange booth located right in front of the carousel. I was advised by the teller at KEB Hana bank in Incheon International Airport that it is better to bring US Dollars to Vietnam and have it changed to Vietnam Dong at the airport or hotel. I initially changed only 1,500 USD for our pocket money since our hotel accommodations, transpo and other services were already paid in advance.
From Cam Ranh International Airport to Nha Trang City
Cam Ranh International Airport is the main airport that serves all domestic and international flights to Nha Trang. Located in Cam Ranh, a town in the Khanh Hoa province in Vietnam, the airport is a 40-minute ride from Nha Trang city.
As we got in the car, Jin, the driver gave us two bottles of cold mineral water as welcome drink. On the way to Nha Trang from Cam Ranh Airport, we passed by beautiful Long Beach where there were signs that internationally-known hotels and resorts are to be built – signs of new things to come. The highway that links the city to the airport is lined by mountains on one side and the sea on the other. Thanks to the hotel’s excellent airport pick-up service, the 40-minute ride to the city was comfortable and stress-free!
Thanks for dropping by, ’til my next post!